When we stayed in New York this winter, our hotel had an amazing view of Chrysler Building, which has always been my favorite skyscraper.
During our stay, I found myself thinking about the building’s numbers. Seven arched tiers at the top. Then the rays on each tier arrayed: one, three, three, five, five, five, eight. These numbers feel elegant, like they carry their own rhythm, a numeric poem. A riff on the Fibonacci Sequence,* which has long been one of the mathematic concepts that’s resonated with me most. Three rays plus two tiers equals five rays. Five rays plus three tiers equals the next tier’s eight.
I had never known about the connection between the Chrysler Building and Fibonacci before, and it was a pleasure to discover it for myself while lying in bed, watching the sunrise.
*A funny story about the Fibonacci Sequence: I first learned about it from Mathnet on PBS, when I must have been somewhere between 5 and 7 years old. Detectives Monday and Frankly used the Fibonacci Sequence to solve a crime, and for me, the pattern has been imbued with a quality of mystery ever since.
I love that this picture captures both the Chrysler Building and the small rooftop garden across the street from our hotel. Large-scale and miniature testaments to beauty.